The decision-maker in a principal-agent relationship. The New York Times Financial Glossary

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agent a‧gent [ˈeɪdʒnt] noun [countable]
1. COMMERCE JOBS a person or company that is paid by another person or company to represent them in business:

• trading companies who act as agents for manufacturers

— see also sub-agent, change agent
ˈaverage ˌagent INSURANCE JOBS
a person or organization whose job is to arrange for insurance claims relating to ships to be examined
ˈbargaining ˌagent HUMAN RESOURCES
in the US, a union chosen by a group of workers in an organization
ˈbusiness ˌagent
1. COMMERCE JOBS in Britain, someone whose job is to represent another person in business matters and make important decisions for them, especially relating to contracts:

• He is now acting as the business agent of a leading industrialist.

2. HUMAN RESOURCES in the US, an employee who represents their labor union in a particular place or organization:

• the business agent for Laborers Local 394

a person or organization that represents people buying property and looks for suitable properties for them
comˈmercial ˌagent
1. COMMERCE JOBS the business representative of a person or organization:

• The company has been conducting sponsorship negotiations through the local football authorities' commercial agent.

2. PROPERTY JOBS a person or organization that buys and sells commercial property for others; = commercial broker AmE:

• the commercial agents for the development

comˈmission ˌagent COMMERCE JOBS
an independent seller of products or services who is paid a commission:

• The insurance group now has 4,500 commission agents.

ˈcustoms ˌagent COMMERCE TAX JOBS
a person or company that is paid to make the formal arrangements for imported goods to go through customs
del ˈcredere ˌagent COMMERCE JOBS
someone who agrees to sell goods for another person and who will pay for the goods even if they do not manage to sell them. In exchange for this they usually receive a larger amount as payment
disˈbursing ˌagent FINANCE
another name for a paying agent
ecoˈnomic ˌagent ECONOMICS
a person, company etc that has an effect on the economy of a country, for example by buying, selling, or investing:

• The two main economic agents in the diagram are individuals and firms.

enˈrolled ˌagent
TAX JOBS in the US, a tax advisor who has worked for the IRS or passed an IRS examination
ˈescrow ˌagent
LAW JOBS a person or organization that accepts money, documents etc in escrow (= kept by a third party):

• As an escrow agent, Ms Harrell collected money from the sales of property purchased with guaranteed loans that had been foreclosed.

esˈtate ˌagent PROPERTY JOBS
someone whose job is to sell houses or land for other people; = real estate agent AmE; , realtor AmE
ˈforwarding ˌagent COMMERCE TRANSPORT JOBS
a company that arranges for goods to be delivered to other countries
free ˈagent
a person or organization that is free to do what they want, without legal or other restrictions:

• After the contract expires, they will be free agents, producing movies at various studios.

ˈhouse ˌagent PROPERTY JOBS
someone whose business is to help people buy and sell their houses; = estate agent Bre; , real estate agent AmE; , real estate broker AmE
inˈsurance ˌagent INSURANCE
a person or organization whose business is giving advice about and selling insurance, either the policies of one insurance company or the policies of different insurance companies:

• Insurance agents rely heavily on a company's ratings and many will sell only policies of companies with a top rating.

ˈland ˌagent COMMERCE
a person or organization that works for a large landowner, managing the land and property, collecting rents etc:

• a land agent representing several landowners and farmers

ˈliterary ˌagent COMMERCE JOBS
someone who is paid by an author to find companies to publish their books, and to discuss the author's contract etc with the publishers
ˈmanaging ˌagent PROPERTY JOBS
someone who works for or represents a property owner, managing properties, collecting rents etc:

• Letting property today is very complex and it is essential you have a competent managing agent.

overˈseas ˌagent COMMERCE JOBS
a person or company that sells another company's goods abroad:

• Licensed overseas agents receive 15% commission on all videocassettes distributed by them.

ˈpatent ˌagent LAW JOBS
someone whose job involves helping people or companies protect their rights for their new products, methods of doing things etc by arranging patent S:

• an application by the company's patent agents for litigation rights

ˈpaying ˌagent
FINANCE a company, usually a bank, that receives money from companies that sell stocks, shares etc and pays the interest and dividend S on them to shareholders. Paying agents charge a fee for this service; = DISBURSING AGENT:

• An issuer will need to appoint a paying agent, to be responsible for the safekeeping of the notes.

ˈreal estate ˌagent PROPERTY JOBS
someone whose job is to sell houses or land for other people; = real estate broker AmE; , estate agent Ame
ˈshipping ˌagent also ˌshipping and ˈforwarding ˌagent COMMERCE TRANSPORT JOBS
a person or company that organizes the documents, insurance etc necessary for sending goods
ˈtransfer ˌagent
FINANCE JOBS someone whose job is to keep a list of all the people owning shares in a company, and who makes the necessary changes if the shares are sold to someone else
ˈtravel ˌagent TRAVEL
1. someone whose job is making travel arrangements for people, for example by arranging their flights, hotels etc
2. travel agent's TRAVEL a shop you can go to for help with making your travel arrangements
2. someone who is paid by actors, musicians etc to find work for them:

• He instructed his agent to say no to the TV series.

ˈpress ˌagent
MARKETING JOBS a person whose job is to supply information about a well-known person or an important company to the newspapers, TV etc:

• Rockefeller hired a press agent to improve his image.

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agent UK US /ˈeɪdʒənt/ noun [C]
COMMERCE a person who is paid to buy or sell products or provide a service for a company, but who is not a regular employee: »

Following the recent insurance scam, legislation is being put in place to ensure all agents protect their customers' best interests.

someone who represents an actor, musician, etc. in order to find work for them: »

a talent/sports/theatrical agent

WORKPLACE someone who represents a company in dealing with customers, especially on the phone: »

To speak with one of our agents, please call us Monday - Friday between 8:30am and 5:00pm.

GOVERNMENT someone who does secret work for a government department: »

a federal/undercover/secret agent

a substance that produces a particular effect: »

Bioterrorism involves the use of biological agents such as viruses and bacteria as weapons of terror.

See also AVERAGE AGENT(Cf. ↑average agent), BARGAINING AGENT(Cf. ↑bargaining agent), BUSINESS AGENT(Cf. ↑business agent), BUYING AGENT(Cf. ↑buying agent), CHANGE AGENT(Cf. ↑change agent), COMMERCIAL AGENT(Cf. ↑commercial agent), COMMISSION AGENT(Cf. ↑commission agent), CUSTOMS AGENT(Cf. ↑customs agent), DEL CREDERE AGENT(Cf. ↑del credere agent), DISBURSING AGENT(Cf. ↑disbursing agent), ECONOMIC AGENT(Cf. ↑economic agent), ENROLLED AGENT(Cf. ↑enrolled agent), ESCROW AGENT(Cf. ↑escrow agent), ESTATE AGENT(Cf. ↑estate agent), FORWARDING AGENT(Cf. ↑forwarding agent), FREE AGENT(Cf. ↑free agent), HOUSE AGENT(Cf. ↑house agent), INSURANCE AGENT(Cf. ↑insurance agent), LAND AGENT(Cf. ↑land agent), LITERARY AGENT(Cf. ↑literary agent), MANAGING AGENT(Cf. ↑managing agent), OVERSEAS AGENT(Cf. ↑overseas agent), PATENT AGENT(Cf. ↑patent agent), PAYING AGENT(Cf. ↑paying agent), PRESS AGENT(Cf. ↑press agent), REAL ESTATE AGENT(Cf. ↑real estate agent), SHIPPING AGENT(Cf. ↑shipping agent), SUBAGENT(Cf. ↑subagent), TRANSFER AGENT(Cf. ↑transfer agent), TRAVEL AGENT(Cf. ↑travel agent)

Financial and business terms. 2012.

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